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Letter to the Editor

Dear Editor,

I was very disappointed to wake up Wednesday morning to the news of the events which transpired on our campus following the announcement that President Obama had won his bid for re-election. The UM Creed, which establishes values that each member of the university community should strive to possess, states, in part, “I believe in respect for the dignity of each person.” When open expression turns to hate filled speech and actions such as we experienced on campus Tuesday night, we not only break our commitment to the Creed, but also to one another. We cannot foster an environment of inclusion and intellectual inquiry when actions such as these are allowed to take place.
While these actions would be deplorable on any campus in our country, having them transpire at The University of Mississippi, in the year that we celebrate fifty years of integration, not only draws special attention to the darkest side of our campus, but also undermines everything that our university has worked toward over the past five decades. As we reflect on these hateful events, and the ignorance that leads to them, I hope that we will all keep in mind the words that Chancellor Jones shared with us at the “50 Years of Integration” commemoration in the Ford Center for the Performing Arts on October 1, 2012: “On the anniversary of such an important event, it is important to express regret for past injustices, recommit to open doors of opportunity for all, regardless of race or ethnicity, celebrate the progress achieved together and acknowledge that we still live in an imperfect world and must continue to seek to rid ourselves and the world of injustice.”

Michael Barnett
Chair of the Faculty Senate
Department of Theatre Arts